We were having some font problems in our previous thread, so now is as good a time as any to open a new thread. The 49ers sent along transcripts from the various press conferences today. New 49ers Anthony Davis and Mike Iupati were flown into Santa Clara and introduced to the media. Additionally, the 49ers held conference calls for their two other new members, Taylor Mays and Navorro Bowman. Mays will be in Santa Clara tomorrow, meeting with the media after the 49ers final pick of the draft.
OT Anthony Davis & OG Mike Iupati
Press Conference - April 23, 2010
San Francisco 49ers
Head Coach Mike Singletary's opening comments:
"We're very excited today. We were able to get two shadows here today beside me. I'm very excited about this young man, [T] Anthony Davis, from Rutgers. We're very excited about him and what he's able to do, brought him in, talked to him a bit, fantastic. Excited to get our hands on him and start to work. On my right here, [G] Mike Iupati, from Idaho. I'm very excited about him. As you can see, they make guys like me look very small. These guys, when you put on the film, you see everything you need to see. They're up here, I'm amazed at how nice they look. They're dressed well, but on the film it's a totally different thing. I'm excited about that."
T Anthony Davis:
On watching film on the offense and how he thinks he fits with the 49ers:
"We didn't get to watch that much film on certain schemes that the 49ers do, but I'm excited to get in here and start working with the position coaches and getting after it."
On if he realized how talented the group of teammates he played with in high school was:
"Not really. We knew we had a lot of talent for a public school. If you would have asked me I wouldn't have doubted it, but at the same time I wouldn't have guessed."
On if he has talked to former high school teammate, CB Kyle Wilson, who was drafted by the New York Jets in the 2010 NFL Draft:
"I spoke to Kyle. He was excited."
On what life has been like since he was drafted and when he got into town:
"I got into San Francisco about 45 minutes ago. Last night was a great experience just having family and friends around to experience the draft with me. It was a once in a lifetime experience and Coach Singletary made it a great one for me. "
On so much happening in such a short period of time:
"I became the biggest 49ers fan last night. After being on the website for about an hour, looking at all of the press conferences and hearing Coach Singletary talk about me after he drafted me, it was surreal. It was a surreal feeling, but a great feeling."
On having contact with the 49ers 17th pick, Mike Iupati:
"We were at the Walter Camp Foundation Banquet. I met Mike down there and we hung out a little bit in the rooms. He's a great guy. When I saw that they drafted Mike at 17, I said, ‘What did I do to have this setup like this, to have it work out like this for me?' It was just great."
On what it's like to hold his own NFL jersey:
"I can't stop smiling. It's a dream come true."
On what it would be like to work alongside Mike Iupati for the next decade:
"Scary. Mike is a beast. It would be great to play with a guy like Mike."
On the negative labels he was given before the draft:
"I don't really worry about the negatives and stuff like that. I'm just going to be the best I can be and listen to my coaches."
G Mike Iupati:
On the chances that he was going to be drafted by the 49ers after T Anthony Davis was drafted:
"I was a bit worried because I knew they needed an offensive lineman, which was Anthony Davis. I was concerned because the Raiders pick was already gone and [the 49ers] were pick 13. I was concerned because they probably picked an offensive lineman and forgot about me."
On what head coach Mike Singletary said to him when he called:
"They called me before they even announced the Titans pick and they said just wait until they announce and they are going to put my name on the board. I was very excited."
On what it was like to have his family around him when he was drafted:
"It was the craziest experience of my life. Just sitting there on the phone and my mom was crying on the right and I see everyone crying. I was tearing up myself. It was probably the craziest phone call ever."
On whether he imagined himself playing in the NFL growing up in American Samoa:
"No, we moved here for education to have a better future and my parents sacrificed a lot. Coming here to the US I went to high school and I realized that football was something that I really liked and something that I wanted to pursue."
On the point that he realized that he could play in the NFL:
"Yes, my freshman year in college. I noticed that I really had great potential and I loved the game, I loved the competition."
On whether starting out as a defensive player helped him become a better offensive lineman:
"Yes, I sometimes think that I have an edge on a defensive player because I was on defense myself in high school. I kind of know how they react and what not, so if they get beat, they will try to counter it."
On how unusual this attention is for him:
"It's crazy. I'm just blessed and happy."
On his relationship with Davis prior to now:
"I met him and I knew instantly that he's a great person, not only off the field but on the field. He has great character and I know he's a very humble person, so we kind of relate to that and became good friends. Hopefully, this relationship will carry a long ways."
On not playing football until high school:
"I just love the game. It would have been nice if I had had that experience growing up, but I didn't and I just took advantage when I had opportunities. So those are some things that you have to grind and keep working at."
On whether personnel people asked him about it:
"No, not really."
On whether there were any football players that he grew up idolizing in American Samoa:
"No, not really. Like I said, we came here for education and just better ourselves and this is the land of opportunity. We came here and I used that as my motivation. My family moved us here and I use that to pursue whatever I do now and it's just been the greatest experience of my life and I know that I'll keep working hard, I'll keep getting better as a person and especially on the football field."
S Taylor Mays
Conference Call - April 23, 2010
San Francisco 49ers
On whether the 49ers were one of the teams that were most interested in him:
"Definitely, I felt like I really connected with Coach Singletary on my visit, but I also connected with the defensive backs coaches on my visit. It didn't surprise me at all when I got the call from a 408 number."
On whether it's a bittersweet day for him that he didn't go in the first round:
"It's bittersweet, but I wanted to play for a coach like Coach Singletary, for a team like the 49ers, a team that's physical, that plays defense that will fight you and punch you in the face. I understand that I fell, but I'd rather fall and go to a team where I have a better chance of having a better quality career than go earlier and go to a team that doesn't have as good of a chance to win. It's tough, but at the same time, I can't complain. I'm in a much better situation than most people are in. I can't wait to get started."
On his feelings about his former coach Pete Carroll taking a safety in the first round that wasn't him:
"It was just interesting. I definitely thought from the relationship that we had, the things that he had told me about what I needed to be aware of for the draft process, the things that I needed to do, I felt he told me the complete opposite of the actions that he took, which was definitely alarming. Some things that he told me I needed to do as a football player, versus the actions that he took and who he took as a safety. I understand it's a business, but with it being a business, you just need to be honest and that's all I was asking for."
On whether he looks forward to playing the Seahawks twice a year now:
"I look forward to playing for Coach Singletary for 16 games more than I look forward to playing for Coach Carroll twice a year."
On the advice that Coach Carroll gave him:
"Just in terms of, I didn't have anything to worry about, that my game was okay, that my back pedaling was fine, my tackling was fine. It's all things that I asked. What do I need to work on? What do I need to show? All these points and I was kind of led to think that I would have been okay. It is what it is and I'm so happy to be with the 49ers and on a team that Ronnie Lott played on. Playing for them, with a coach like Singletary and it's on the West Coast, so it's close to home, I really couldn't be any happier right now."
On whether Ronnie Lott was a player that he emulated his game after:
"It's a guy that I've looked up to for a very long time in my life and he's a safety I try to emulate a lot. I went to USC to try and live the legacy that he lived at USC and now I get to go to the San Francisco 49ers, where I'll try to carry on the legacy that he left. I feel the obligation to do it and that's somebody that I'll definitely give a call to later today if he doesn't give me a call."
On whether he feels he has something to prove in the NFL:
"I feel like I have the biggest chip on my shoulder of anybody in the draft, but I felt like that before the draft. I think it's just a little more amplified. I'm so happy to just be on the San Francisco 49ers. It's not just a chip to prove people wrong, it's a chip to show what I can do. I already know what I can do with myself. I'm not worried about getting back at anybody. I'm just worried about showing what I can do and obviously the San Francisco 49ers believed in that. That's all the confidence that I need, that they believed in me and I can take care of the rest."
On whether he's a complete safety or an in-the-box safety:
"Well, that's what we're going to find out over these next couple of months and years is whether I can play in the box or deep. I know what I can do and know what I'm capable of doing. I think it's just a misconception that I can't do a lot of things as a safety. That's why I've got coaches that are willing to work with me. I talked to these San Francisco coaches and they said they were going to teach me and show me, and I am going to be the best safety I can be and take it all in. And once I do that, there's nothing that can stop me."
On whether he got a good sense of where they were going to play him:
"I've got a great sense for it. We went over a lot of defenses that they run. We watched a lot of film and we did a lot of work in the film room. That's something that I'm going to be very acclimated to their defense quickly and see if I can start learning it today."
On where Michael Lewis plays and if that's where he sees himself playing:
"I don't' know. I don't know what they want me to do. If they want me to play safety or linebacker or corner, I'll do whatever they tell me to do. I know they move their safeties around a lot, so it will be good regardless."
On whether he knows Safety Dashon Goldson:
"Yes, I knew Dashon and I met him again and reunited with him when I was at San Francisco. I had known him when he was at the University of Washington and I was in Seattle in high school. He was a University of Washington safety and somebody that I watched. I studied his game a little bit because he was at Washington."
On how Dashon Goldson and he will team together:
"I think he's a safety that is so underrated. He's a supreme athlete and he's really shown it in especially this last year. I know what I bring is just physical dominance and a physical attitude. That's a defense that they already play. Being teamed up with guys like Dashon and [linebacker] Takeo [Spikes] and [linebacker] Patrick Willis, those are the guys that bring the wood in. I think that's what I do best and I'm going to show them that I can bring it for them."
LB Navorro Bowman
Conference Call - April 23, 2010
San Francisco 49ers
On whether he had any inclination that he would be drafted by the 49ers:
"No, not at all."
On whether he had any interaction with the 49ers leading up to the draft:
"No, really it was just the normal protocol with those guys calling around, making sure I was the right draft day number. Other than the interview at the combine, I didn't have any contact with them. It was a big surprise for me."
On being a linebacker drafted by Head Coach Mike Singletary:
"I know that he's a coach that really instills dedication, hard work and discipline. I've come from high school all the way to college and now this point. I'm able to get coached that way and I'm glad to have a coach like that at this level. A lot goes on and you lose that type of coaching. I'm glad to have this type of opportunity to play for Coach Singletary."
On whether he felt he had to convince teams at the combine that he was not a character risk:
"I had to do what I had to do when it comes to the character issue. I know what type of a person I am. I've had so many teammates that love playing with me and love me being a part of their team. I'm glad that the 49ers see that I'm a good guy and I bring a positive attitude and a great athlete and linebacker to their program."
On whether he was beginning to wonder if he would have to wait another day before being drafted:
"Yes, I was getting worried. I had just walked out and got some air, came back and sat down. I looked up and my phone was ringing. I thank God and just wish that my father was here to see everything that happened to me now."
On where he thinks he'll be playing in a 3-4 defense:
"The normal 3-4 is with two defensive end type guys out there. I like to fly around and be in space. With that type of defense, I'll probably be in the middle somewhere flying around, making plays. Just running the same plays that I had at Penn State and even a little better."
On what he knows about linebacker Patrick Willis:
"I watch Patrick Willis a lot. He's a great player. I've been watching him the past few years. He's been excelling every single year. I'm glad to have him to learn from. Always having a guy to learn from and get underneath his wings. I'm just glad to have this opportunity. I've got open ears and open eyes. I'm just ready to go, ready to roll."
On who is there with him:
"I have my family here. They've been with me throughout the whole day, even yesterday. We've all been sitting here waiting for my name to be called. I'm blessed and thankful that my name was even called, even as late as it was. I think of myself as a great athlete, but I'll take it."
On whether he interviewed with Head Coach Mike Singletary at the combine:
"I did. I think he's an observing coach. When I walked into that room, I had to speak up and let them know the type of player that I was. He sat over there, real quiet, I guess to feel me out and saw what type of player and person I was off the field. I'm just glad that he's taking the chance and believing in me."
On whether Head Coach Mike Singletary asked him to speak up:
"No, he didn't ask me to speak up. He was just over there basically paying attention to me from inside and just trying to see, really, what type of person I was."
On whether he knows any current 49ers:
"Oh yes. I know a few 49ers. I've been working out with [RB] Frank Gore and [TE] Vernon Davis and those guys. We built up that relationship not knowing that we would have this opportunity to play on the same team. Those two are great guys, and I'm looking forward to playing for the 49ers."
On whether he knows RB Michael Robinson:
"And Michael Robinson, also. I'm not working out with him, but me and Mike were teammates when he was doing his thing here at Penn State. I got to get to know him for a few semesters. I'm glad to have this opportunity."
On whether he's in South Florida right now:
"No, I'm actually in Prince Georges County, Maryland. My hometown."
On whether he was in Florida to work out:
On how he got hooked up with RB Frank Gore and TE Vernon Davis:
"You know, I really didn't. We just basically go to the same guy who trains a lot of guys, who was Pete Bommarito and he does a great job. Those guys came to work every single day, and so did I. We just basically motivated each other and joked around a few times, just basically help each other train hard and get better."
On whether he weighs 240 right now:
On whether that's his playing weight:
"I'm going to play at whatever weight they want me to play at."
Head Coach Mike Singletary
Press Conference - April 23, 2010
San Francisco 49ers
"Today, we had two extra picks, added two more players added to the roster on the defensive side of the ball. [S] Taylor Mays, I'm very excited about him, excited about the upside that the young man has. I had a chance to talk to him on the phone and I'm sure he's disappointed that he didn't get picked earlier, but I'm thankful that he had the chance to be here. This is the guy that wanted to be a 49er. This is the guy that I think can help us. We are just going to have to coach him up and we'll go from there. [LB] Navarro Bowman, when you look at this kid on film, a lot of things jump out at you. He's always going to the football. He uses his hands very well, does not spend a lot of time getting locked on the lineman and tussling with those guys. He's going to the football. A very good football player and I'm very excited to get him where we did."
On where he sees Bowman playing:
"Right now, he's going to come in and add depth. We were able to get [LB] Scott McKillop last year. He came in and he's still developing. He's going to come in and he's going to do the same thing. At the very beginning, he's going to help out on special teams and work his tail off to learn the defense, some of the things that we do, some of the techniques, the skills, the tools, all of those things. Sometimes it just takes a little while, but I'm excited about him and we'll see what happens."
On whether he's a MIKE linebacker:
"I just talked to him and I asked him how much he weighed and he said he weighed about 240. He could play TED or MIKE at that weight."
On whether he is someone that they did a thorough background search and were satisfied with what he found:
"He was one of the guys that we really set a personal interview with at the combine and sat down and talked with him and really worked our way through that. I think after that interview, I felt good about the possibilities of taking him. So I'm sure he has worked through some of those issues and has matured. Just excited to get that behind him and move forward."
On whether he schedules interviews that have those question marks:
"Well, first and foremost, we want to schedule interviews with guys that we are interested in and I think sometimes, most of the guys that you interview that are coming out of college have some kind of issue. You can grade them, whether it's a level 10 or level 1. We do a lot of homework, the scouts do a great job of finding out a lot of information beforehand, and if we are interested in a guy as a football player, we want to interview him. Oh by the way, if something has come up here and there, we find out and we question the kid about it and a lot of times you can tell whether the kid is still doing those things or if he's put those things behind him and moved forward. It's a very interesting time. It's only 15 minutes, but it's amazing what you can find out in 15 minutes."
On Taylor Mays being the size of a linebacker:
"I think Taylor Mays is one of those guys that I really don't know what he was asked to do at USC. I think when you look at the film and you see the guy, he's back 20 yards, it's pretty amazing. When he came in and we had him for the interview there were just some things that he was just not asked to do. Sometimes, I think as coaches, you assume that they can't do it. But I'm excited about him. Anytime you find a guy that has the intangibles that he does, just the ability to move and being able to have the range that he has. I think our defensive backs coaches, Johnnie Lynn, [Vance Joseph] V.J., will get their hands on him and get some work done. We'll see exactly what we have, all of that potential, put it in place and make him the best football player that he can be. The one thing I know is he's hungry. He wants to be a great football player, and he wants to be a 49er. That's really huge and I'm very excited about that."
On whether Taylor Mays has the intangibles:
"I think so, I really do."
On whether Taylor Mays was drafted for his athleticism more than what was on film:
"Well, I think when you look at some of these guys, you end up drafting them because they can run a little faster. You sit down and you talk to your position coaches and ask the same question that we did when we talked to [offensive line] coach [Mike] Solari about [Guard Mike] Iupati, can he do it? When V.J. sits down and Johnnie Lynn sits down and talks to Taylor Mays, they came away from that conversation realizing that coach, this guy is willing to do all of the things that we need him to do. Not only is he willing to do them, when you look at his workout, you look at the way his hips can move, you look at some of the things he can do, we know he can do those things, it's just a matter of getting him to do it."
On Taylor Mays saying he has the biggest chip on his shoulder in the draft and being motivated:
"Everything has to be put in perspective. I remember going through the draft when I felt I had done everything in college that I could possibly do to be a first round pick. When they tell you that you're just not tall enough, you kick every tire you can find on every car you can find. Everything else gets in the way. You probably say a lot of silly things just out of hurt. But the most important thing is you put it behind you and understand the opportunity at hand. There are a lot of guys that got drafted the first day, but they won't play very long and they won't be very good football players. There are other guys that get drafted or may not get drafted at all that will be in the hall of fame. I think it's very important for a player to come into the league to understand that."
On whether he used the slight of being drafted in the second round as fuel early on in his career:
On how long that motivation lasted:
"I don't think it ever went away."
On what S Taylor Mays said earlier:
"What he said, I don't know - and I said this a little while ago - I don't know what the relationship is between he and [Seahawks Head Coach] Pete [Carroll]. You put yourself in his shoes, I can only imagine. I played for a guy for a number of years and whether you deserve to be picked or not deserve to be picked, it's just one of those things, ‘Well, wait a minute. I thought I was your guy.' And when it doesn't happen, it's got to hurt. I can't imagine what that - I'm thankful I never had to go through that. But I know what he said. I hear what he said. I'm just thankful that I think he did the best job that he could possibly do without saying something that was a low blow."
On why a potential Top 10 pick was still available at 49:
"For a lot of the reasons that I just talked about. When you turn on the film, when you look at him play, first of all, he's not in the box. He's not close to the line of scrimmage. And, whoever it was, the coordinator, just decided, ‘Hey, we're going to put him back in the middle of the field 20 yards back and let him play.' I think for us, I think Taylor Mays is a guy that has a ton of potential. And, our job is going to be to make sure that we help him utilize it as best he can."
On whether he is a starter from Day 1:
"No, I can't say that. None of these guys are going to be starters from Day 1. They've got to come in and earn it."
On whether he envisions Mays as an in-the-box guy initially:
"Once we get him here and get our hands on him, we'll see exactly what he is. When you get a guy like that and you play him a little closer to the line of scrimmage, who knows what he can do. There are just a lot of things that he wasn't asked to do. So, we'll see."
On how Defensive Coordinator Greg Manusky reacted to both selections today:
"He was excited. He was very excited. I mean, the whole defense was excited. I think you have a chance to get a guy like this on the second day. He was very excited about it."
On how good he feels about whether the team has improved:
"I feel very good about what we've been able to accomplish. I think when you look at the identity of the 49ers, I think every one of these guys that we pick fit the identity. As long as we can stay close to that, stay on track, we've got guys that are going to hit people, guys that are going to be physical, guys who are going to do their job. That's exciting to me."